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Sautéd Bresse Pigeon on Beetroot Lentils with Gnocchi in Cream Sauce

The Palais Coburg hotel is one of Vienna's top addresses. Coburg Restaurant chef Christian Petz was chef of the year 2002. This is his classic bresse pigeon recipe.



8 pigeon breasts
30g butter
Salt, pepper thyme and rosemary
100ml pigeon sauce

For the lentils:

60g diced shallots
100g Beluga lentils
1 tablespoon apple-balsamic vinegar
1/4 liter beetroot stock
1/8 liter chicken stock
20g butter

For the gnocchi in cream sauce:

200 g mealy, cooked potatoes (peeled)
100g flour
1 egg yolk
2 tablespoons of crème fraîche


To prepare the lentils: soften the shallots in butter on low heat, add the lentils and douse the mixture with the apple-balsamic vinegar. Top the mixture up with the chicken- and beetroot stock, add a pinch of time and cook the lentils until they're soft. Add salt and pepper to taste.

To prepare the gnocchi strain the potatoes through a sieve, and knead the mixture into a dough by adding the flour and egg yolks. Add the salt and nutmeg. On a wooden board, form the dough into a coil, cut it into pieces, and roll the dough into little balls using a fork. Drop the gnocchi into salted boiling water, wait until it returns to a boil and let them simmer for around 4 minutes. Drain the gnocchi and toss them in crème fraîche. Add salt and white pepper to taste.

Sprinkle the pigeon breasts with salt and pepper. Sauté them in butter, adding thyme and rosemary to taste. Bake them in the oven for 8 minutes at 150 degrees celcius, then reduce the heat to 80 degrees and let them cook for 5 more minutes.

Spoon the lentils onto the plate, place the sliced pigeon breasts on top, add the gnocchi and a dollop of pigeon sauce. Serve with fresh spinach leaves.

Bon appetit!